This year I have the privilege of presenting a paper at the 2014 Southwest ETS Regional meeting. This year’s meeting will be hosted by Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary Fort Worth and will take place on March 7th-8th. The theme is “The Decline of Denominationalism, and the Future of Evangelical Christianity.”
I am so excited to be presenting at my second conference! Here is the abstract for paper I will be presenting:
Jonathan Edwards: America’s Theologian?
A Latino Evaluation of Jonathan Edwards’s Hamartiology
Christopher G. Woznicki
Eternity Bible College
Robert Jenson has famously dubbed Jonathan Edwards “America’s theologian.” Jenson has in mind an American Christianity that has the Enlightenment as its defining narrative. However there are other narratives that give meaning to the phrase “American Christianity,” for instance the Latino Evangelical narrative. With the rapid growth of the Latino Evangelical population, the Latino perspective will become increasingly important in Evangelical theological discussion. This paper examines the claim that Edwards is “America’s theologian” by evaluating his Hamartiology through a Latino Evangelical lens. If Edwards’s theology can be read fruitfully from a Latino perspective then perhaps we can indeed say that he is “America’s theologian.” I argue that the theology of Jonathan Edwards can be used as a constructive dialogue partner for Latino Evangelical theology.
This paper begins by examining Edwards’s metaphysics of sin in light of his Federalist and Augustinian realist tendencies, paying special attention to the role metaphysical antirealism and his doctrine of continuous creation play in his doctrine of original sin. It goes on to examine Justo Gonzalez’s “Fuenteovejuna Theology” which exemplifies a Latino emphasis on the community. By examining Edwards and Gonzalez it becomes apparent that Edwards’s theology and Latino theology have a communal rather than individualistic understanding of responsibility and action. Thus in this particular area Edwards can speak constructively into Latino theology and we can truly say that he is “America’s theologian.”